Category Archives: People

Covid 2: Professionals

Dear Dorigen,

I wish you the best as you heal from covid. As you know, I managed my covid days with the tv show, V, which was mostly chosen in a fever-dream-like state. If you’ve already finished rewatching the timeless Pride and Prejudice (1995) and Persuasion (1997), might I suggest a turn in the completely opposite direction of romantic fiction: professional YouTube videos? Like, YouTube videos showing one’s profession. I’m subscribed to all of these.

Dr. Kirk Honda is always charming, but this psychiatrist’s take on the The Bachelor Presents: Listen to Your Heart series is especially informative and hilarious, as he tackles potential personal traumas and deeply uninteresting music vocal choices. I hope to never actually watch that show.

Fashion notes: Professional button-down shirts in blue and pink tones, and the occasional t-shirt (which usually include an explanation).

Deeper than Hair and Elite Hair Care USA beautifully cut, style, and treat hair with love and understanding, especially for those with alopecia or other hair health challenges.

Fashion notes: Fabulous hair, fabulous nails, fabulous rings, and the occasional obligatory face mask.

I will often fall asleep to Baumgartner Restoration. The sounds of dropped rusty tacks and a dull scalpel, scrapping against an ancient canvas are delightful.

Fashion notes: Art restoration chic involves tightly trimmed hair, jeans, and a button down shirt under a work apron.

Since you didn’t heed my warning, and you watched The Hoof GP anyway (it’s so gross and so captivating), you may find Mountain Rug Cleaning and Lubuskie Centrum Czystości just as gross and captivating, but with no discernable puss.

Fashion notes: Pristine white rain boots pair well against filthy rugs and soap bubbles.

Have you stumbled onto any interesting things to watch in your alerted state?



P.S. I’ve already offered to send you a jigsaw puzzle and texted a Karen Puzzles video to you. Both are there for you if you change your mind.

Fashion notes: Middle part, rectangle glasses, gold nail polish, and a love for gradient puzzles that hasn’t reached her wardrobe. Karen is usually in stripes or solids.

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The V in coVid

Dear Dorigen,

To put it mildly, covid is awful. Pete and I finally got it after years of being careful, locking ourselves away, vaccines, boosters, masks, scented anti-bacterial sprays, etc. I expected the many hours of sleep, the fever, the inability to taste, the aches, the coughs, the phlegm; I didn’t expect the fuzzy brain fog. My dreams are so uninformative.

To help us through, Pete and I carved out the occasional 45-minute timeslot to watch an episode of V (1984-5). I keep seeing familiar faces in the actors: Michael Ironside (I was his character in Scanners one year for Halloween), June Chadwick (she’s the girlfriend in This is Spinal Tap), Marc Singer (The Beastmaster, but really I know him best by me thinking he’s Kevin Bacon), Robert Englund (Freddy Krueger and recently sans-eyes on Stranger Things), and Sheryl Lee Ralph (OMG, I clocked her immediately as the co-star to Morris Day in New Attitude).

We got half-way through V: The Complete Series when we realized that the “complete series” is actually part 3 of the franchise. V: The Original Miniseries and V: The Final Battle (which is somehow part 2) apparently came first and will be watched in time. My guess is the fashion is the same in all: the villainous aliens in red spandex with triangle crotch coverings, the heroic humans in blue denim and brushed out perms, and the half-breed star-child in head-to-toe purple.

I’m finally on the other side of covid and back to work, but the brain fog is still confusing things. Perhaps when it’s cleared, Marc Singer will be Marc Singer, and not Kevin Bacon, but I’m unsure. Also, with so many inspiring fashions in V, one could compile a killer Halloween costume, but I’m already prepped and ready to be a tomato.

Are you ready for your upcoming costuming: Great Gatsby attire for a friend’s fabulously themed wedding anniversary party? Are there feathers? How many feathers?



P.S. I haven’t yet seen how Diana does her “scientific best” to command someone’s fleet.

P.P.S. Inspired by an episode of Karen Puzzles, I also watched The Circle. This is not to be confused with The Circle (with Emma Watson, Tom Hanks, and digs at Google), not The Secret Circle (about teens with witchcraft powers, headband-length skirts, and mascara), and not Circle (the ethics-horror movie where the white guy wins). No, I watched season 3 of The Circle, the reality show where people never see their fellow contestants and they vote each other out of temporary apartments for money. Two of the Spice Girls made an appearance in Season 4. ❤

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Accidentally On Purpose Fashion

Dear Dorigen,

It was great seeing you and the family in Chicago recently. As you know I had some sort of mystery accident that caused pain and numbness in my side and has made mobility challenging. With challenge comes great fashion responsibility, so here’s how I’m coping.

1) Summer Dresses

Likely the injury is a pinched nerve, and the first thing that was prescribed to me was loose-fitting clothing. I have been in a cute summer dress on the daily for over a month now; if I look like a drunken mummy when I walk, then I am going to make for damn sure that I am dressed like a fabulous, rich, cultured, fashionable drunken mummy. Some of my GO TOs…

Green African Print – Etsy | Multi-color Tiered Dress – Nordstrom Rack | Top Shop Striped Dress – I found it on Poshmark  | Green Etsuko – MM.Lafleur  | Printed Shirt Dress | Midi Floral Dress – Tory Burch – Sold out.

2) Disruptor Sandals

I am currently on another self-imposed clothing spending freeze, so when I spotted these exceedingly cushioned, yet elaborate Fila “Disruptor” sandals that legit help me walk and make me feel fabulous, I asked Pete to buy them for me. Just sayin. As soon as I stepped foot at work in these sandals, I was shocked to be inundated with comments from the young bloods. I thought I was going old school, old person (or as you called them “clodhoppers”), but apparently these were THE sandal of Lollapalooza 2019. I have had strangers come up to me and say things like “oh, I’ve been wanting to see these in person” (because they are apparently in a bunch of fashion blogs, including ours now). Werk.


Fila “Disruptor” Sandals

3) Fashion Cane

I have been threatening to buy a fashion cane for years now, for the various innocuous injuries I incur (e.g. a stubbed toe, slight headache, etc.), and now that I absolutely need one, I bought a standard cane, and added my own flare. I just happened to already own an over-sized fur rabbit keychain that has fulfilled my fidgety heiress fantasy.

I got both of these keychains on Etsy

I will know for certain if it’s a pinched nerve or something else after I get my MRI results. The MRI scan was a trip. They do absolutely everything they can to make you comfortable, so you don’t have a flailing panic attack when trapped within the loud coffin machine. I was given multiple pillows, wrapped in a blanket, eye cover, ear plugs, headphones, and they offered to play absolutely any music (I had them do a YouTube mix of Beirut). On further reflection, I might have gone with one of my “5 desert island albums” – Kelly’s Shoes, Marlo Thomas and Friend’s Free to Be You and Me, Digital Underground’s Sex Packets, Sonic Youth’s EVOL (you bought me that), and anything by Casiotone for the Painfully Alone.

So, that was my long way of asking you – what are the five albums you would take with you to a desert island?



Halloween 2018

Dear Dorigen,

For Halloween this year I was a combination of the two sisters in Melancholia.


It’s uncanny.




Dear Dorigen,

I found my haircut: regardless of the length of the rest of it, I must have bangs. I figured it out the year I was Anna Wintour for Halloween; the wig got me itching for bangs.


It took 3 people and a trip to SEE Eye Wear to get that electrical tape off of my red Ray-Bans (they’re prescription)

So I tried it out, and it was the right call; I’ve decided that I look my best with bangs. However, as someone who likes change (who gets her hair cut just to plan how she is going to do it differently next time), knowing definitively how I look my best is so unfortunate.

It’s stifling. It’s boring. I want to change it. I tried to change it. But growing out bangs is not an easy pursuit. There are a lot of hair clips involved, oh, and a lot of uncovered, little forehead pimples for some reason. I haven’t gone full headband yet, but I’m getting there. A couple weeks ago, my bangs had grown about an extra inch and I was annoyed with the fuss, so I decided to do nothing one morning. I wanted to see what they would do independent of my meddling, so I just parted my bangs down the middle and walked out into the winds of Chicago.

When I got into the office that morning, my bangs were like two fluffs of cotton, unlovingly torn from a child’s discarded toy and taped to my forehead at odd angles. They looked so terrible that when I popped into my boss’s office for an impromptu meeting, she thought that I was about to tell her someone had died. I’m not projecting here; she literally told me she was concerned, specifically because of the state of my bangs.

Side note, later that day, after my bangs had time to mellow, I swear I looked just like Oscar Wilde: hair, white collar shirt, scarflet, a look of disdain.



However, occasionally looking like Oscar Wilde by happy accident is not my reliable personal best. So, I’m going back to bangs. Not because of a few bad grow-out days, but because I am my aesthetically and emotionally best self when I have my best haircut. I already sent my hair stylist a text with a heads-up, thinking she would give me push back for caving after only 2 months, and all she sent back was “whatever u wanna do!” You’re right, Courtnie. Why fight it?! I’m coming to you! Tomorrow? I texted times.

So, I guess with me already coming to an answer about my bangs, my question to you this week is… For Project Runway All Stars, can they take this time of change as an opportunity to get a new fashion stylist for Alyssa Milano? Her clothes are some of the worst scraps of fabric I have ever seen pinned to a human being.


cute bangs




Hi Dorigen,

I had a lovely Labor Day weekend with you and the family in Milwaukee, where, of course, the 115th Harvey Davidson Fest blazed through town. I figured a biker fashion recap would be in order, but all I wanted to do was part the cascading leather fringe, pluck off the grips of bushy fox tails, and roll up those weathered T’s to expose and stare at the many, the proud, the glorious biker bellies.

I see bellies as a confidence. When I was in High School, my gut was making its presence known and I remember wanting the world to embrace it. As a teenager, I conceptualized a pair of pants with a heart on the gut, which could be circled when placing your thumbs in your pockets. I imagined strutting down the runway with a crop top, thumbs in my fashion-pants pockets, showing love for my stomach.

I appreciate the belly story you shared. When grandma was pregnant with dad, she was running errands on Mitchell Street and, as she walked with her big, pregnant belly, the elastic on her underwear snapped and fell to the ground. As the resourceful, unembarrassed, and comically brilliant person that she was, Grandma picked up what was left of her underwear, nonchalantly placed them in the nearest mailbox, and quietly continued with her errands.

This weekend, while spectating at the Biker Rally, I wanted to swaddle my ears and my entire body, exposing only my belly-staring eyes, because of the sound, that deafening, body-vibrating sound of revving motorcycle engines, which felt like guttural growls of hunger; hunger for the road and the wind, I suppose, but also clearly hunger for being seen and heard and felt by everyone. It was invasive, but those sitting bellies were glorious.

Sending love directly from my belly,


P.S. I got so much peanut butter on my puff sleeves last week that I included a jar of Jif in my daily outfit catalog.